A reader explains:

States' rights and balanced budgets are fine things, no doubt, but in the context of our time, they are secondary issues. One's conservatism must be defined by one's posture to the one overarching cause of our time, the war against Islamic Fascism.

You have made increasingly insincere noises regarding your support for this war. You act wounded if anyone suggests that attacking the commander in chief in time of war is anything other than a patriotic act of dissent that should be lauded. There were those who thought and behaved exactly as you did during the Civil War: they were called Copperheads. There were many, of the McLelland camp, who believed Lincoln was waging war with criminal incompetence and that a change needed to be made. Thank God McLelland's people didn't get the 'change' they were seeking!

Just prior to the attack on Pearl Harbour these same practioners of this so-called noble patriotic dissent were known as Isolationists, and they were vocal about FDR's barely suppressed desire to enter the war on the Allied side. Except that few - if any - prominent Isolationists continued a relentless attack on FDR's comptence after the loss of the Philippines and the battle of the Kasserine pass.

How can somebody as superficially bright as you miss the fact that, for all his shortcomings, Bush is our current leader in this fight, and if he may not be the most inspiring leader at times, attacking him as you do effectively removes you from the list of 'conservatives'.

And please stop wasting your time on the 'torture' issue! It's not resonating at ALL among the people. They see what happens when an American soldier is caught by these animals, and are not impressed by people like you and McCain who want to Mirandize them and appoint them an ACLU lawyer.

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